Monthly Archives: August 2008

sad spuds

My potatoes have looked like shit for a few months but I kept watering them hoping there would be earthy hidden treasures behind that old rubber. They were so gorgeous at first. Fingers crossed. But then I knocked over a tire tower expecting what was promised to me: 20-30 pounds of spuds and instead I got like 20-30 ounces. Super lame and disappointing. I think it is blight which also got my tomatoes but they are still producing like crazy. The whole point of the tire stack was to force the stem into root by burying it. And since potatoes are a root, then you’d have an assload of potatoes to enjoy. But I carefully removed tire by tire, heart racing in anticipation of a Mountain of Potatoes, only to uncover a scrawny helping that served Andy and me and one friend as a side dish to our giant elk steaks. The first lame yield looks especially lamer with a thumb as a point of reference. I waited another few weeks to knock over the second stack and it was slightly better but still, the little-eyed dudes were all lounging at the very bottom. In other back yard news, the chickens are doing well although Bossy still isn’t laying…many think we have a cock on our hands. This is my first time growing potatoes because of the space issue in my small plot. They never flowered. I am wondering if I should have left them in the ground longer…just when you think your thumb is bright green, mother nature bitch slaps you and says you have a long way to go. Read more on sad spuds…
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spiffed up piggies

Yesterday, I bought shoes that I love. Shoes that even when half-off were more money than I felt comfortable spending. Thank you, Anne, for justifying this purchase. You are a good friend. The color is envy. And I was. I wasn’t even going to try them on and then I did. I had memories of this store during this sale last year when I was very pregnant and I tried shoes on and fell flat on my face in the middle of the crazed ladies clamoring for the Michael Stars t shirts and size 27 skinny jeans. I came home with shoes on that day as well, but these. Oh my. These shoes are inspiring me to clean out my closet and get rid of everything I don’t love as much. Or at least organize my closet so I can always look at them. I bought another pair as well that I do also adore. They are cute and practical as they are neutral and comfortable and summer-sexy. But, the emerald beauties have my heart. Read more on spiffed up piggies…
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a hitch in my giddyup

I haven’t been running much. I miss it. Everything after pregnancy and childbirth is really different, although I beg to differ with people who claim you can’t do everything you did before. Because you can. It’s just different. You can go to a late dinner at a friend’s house but you might have to deal with an unpredictable nap schedule the next day or you can go on a run but you might have to deal with pulling over with the jog stroller in the middle of a busy street to wrestle with two sports bras and a leashed dog to access the boob your bug is whining for. Read more on a hitch in my giddyup…
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one can only consume so many mojitos

Montana can grow some mean mint. I love mint–love the way it looks and smells, the way it thoughtfully fills in around all of the other bush-like plants in my low-water garden. It is also a natural mosquito repellent. Not to be confused with mojitos, because it attracts those. I went to an Indian dinner party and was charged with making a vegetarian dish. I made two and was happy to use up about four cups of mint from my garden. Both recipes turned out fabulous and were a perfect accompaniment to the lamb curry, pea and carrot salad, eggplant dahls and cucumber salad the other ladies prepared. It is funny how potlucks always work out with good friends and how they are a total disaster with acquaintances. With pals, everyone makes their best dish and brings plenty of it but throw a potluck for folks you don’t know so well and dinner ends up being chips and salsa and crusty bread with cheese. Maybe a depressing raw veggie tray and/or a flat of assorted cookies from Costco. Anyway, our meal rocked although there was one major disaster: In my enthusiastic pulsing of the mint date sauce, I broke the giraffe lady sculpture I bought for Andy for father’s day. Bummer. :: :: :: mint and date dipping sauce (chef: Padma Lakshmi) Ingredients: Read more on one can only consume so many mojitos…
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yo. Isn’t this supposed to be a gardening blog or something?

Yes, I still garden. In fact I have spent much of my free time in my plot which is why I haven’t written about it. But still. My checklist of potential amazing and inspiring posts is growing so, tonight, with my largish glass of pinot noir and bowl of lesbian popcorn (that is what my friend calls my popcorn with brewer’s yeast, garlic salt and olive oil), I am at my computer to write awesome words and showcase mouth-watering photographs about my tiny backyard edible jungle. And a jungle it has become. In trying to decide what the heck to cut out of my busy summer, I decided weeding would hit to road. Well, really, I weed *just before* the intruders go to seed and then pitch the gargantuan plants in the trash so as to not sow those pesky seeds. It is a lovely strategy if one can get over the not-so-tidy appearance of the whole mess: water the puhjesus out of the earth, wait several hours until the sun warms the muddy soil into damp dankness and then grab the thick weed stalks and voila. This gardener just bought herself another few weeks. Anyway. The tomatoes. They are really good this year (although I may be a bit in denial about a potential fungus). It’s a good thing the tomatoes rock because my carrots are super shitty. Like no germination. But I do need to mention that I threw the rest of the seeds in the soil like what if and they germinated in the mega heat of Western Montana summer. So, hey, maybe the carrots can redeem themselves. Maybe. Back to those ripe, fleshy, round, red, saucy maters. The Sungolds were first. They always are with their sun-kissed ocher perfection . But my first hugey huge slicer was a Cosmonaut and then the Siberian. Then the Golden Girl with her show-offy complexion and perfect figure. And the beets are pure heaven. Although Chioggia had a lame germination, those that made it are gorgeous swirls of 1984 lipstick and white chalk. We made an epic salad last night of steamed beets and barely steamed beet greens with a dressing of dijon, balsamic, olive oil and salt. I am learning that it is totally worth the extra coin to get good mustard, vinegar, oil and salt. But that’s another post. The Detroit Dark Red rock my world. They are huge and perfect. We have peppers. I harvested the onions and they are tiny but cute. How does one get bigger onions? So things are growing well on the stead. Every meal tastes like summer which is a good thing because the light and my mood are changing. Fall is approaching. I can feel it in my veins. Canning soon. Read more on yo. Isn’t this supposed to be a gardening blog or something?…
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